Art, Architecture and Design
This article spotlights a particular building or some other aspect of Columbus design. I welcome your comments, corrections and additions. Please share your experience and perceptions of these uniquely Columbus projects.
- Built: 1980
- Address: 2920 Tenth Street (corner of 10th and McClure)
- Design Architect: Frank Adams Jr. (Frank Adams Jr. & Associates – Columbus, Indiana)
- General Contractor: Repp & Mundt (Columbus, Indiana)
Developmental Services, Inc. (DSI) is a non-profit agency established in 1975 to help children and adults with mental, physical, and emotional disabilities achieve their maximum potential in home, work and community settings. DSI provides early intervention services, job training, job placement, independent and group living, life skills training, respite care and family support. DSI currently provides service to individuals in 30 counties in Indiana.
The local organization was providing services from several smaller buildings and it was decided to build a new state of the art training and services center. Columbus architect Frank Adams Jr. was chosen to design the new structure. It was meant to make a statement: that services to the handicapped and developmentally disabled were important to the community and that they should be highly visible. This was one of the first comprehensive centers of its type in the State of Indiana.
Adams designed a large 58,000 square foot white building surrounded by an earth berm. The building was constructed for maximum use of space with flexibility for future program changes. In what was seen in most Frank Adams Jr. buildings it was designed to be highly energy efficient. The ground was sloped halfway up the side of the building to stop heat loss and all the walls were fully insulated. The space was divided into 5 heating/cooling zones which could be individually controlled.
The building is divided into 2 parts: DSI’s 5-county regional office taking up 20% of the space with the sheltered workshops and multi-purpose areas using the rest. A large multi-purpose room serves as a cafeteria, meeting room and physical education center. Training and diagnostic areas feature sliding walls that can convert a larger room into 2 or 3 smaller areas. The large workshop area that is used by clients and trainees to perform subcontract work for local companies was designed as a flexible space and meant to resemble an actual industrial facility. They wanted clients and trainees to feel as if they were working in a “real” industrial setting.
- Born on born March 24, 1940 in New Albany, Indiana
- Miami University – Oxford, Ohio (1963)
- Died August 28, 2003
Frank M. Adams Jr. was a prolific Columbus architect who designed a wide range of local and regional buildings, renovations and additions along with many residential projects. Frank began his career as architect and project manager for the Design-Build Division of Dunlap construction in 1966. He also worked with architect Bruce Adams on a number of projects. He founded his own firm as Frank Adams Jr. & Associates in 1976. He added a Bloomington, Indiana office in 1988.
He and his wife Susan Prather Adams died tragically on August 28th, 2003 in a highway crash on I-75 near Gaylord, Michigan. They were headed for Macinaw Island to celebrate their 34th wedding anniversary. He was 63, She was 59. Susan Adams was a native of Columbus. She was an elementary schoolteacher, an active member of the Bartholomew County Historical Society and a Columbus Visitors Center Tour Guide. They were both very active in all facets of the Columbus community are missed greatly.
Selected Frank Adams Jr. Projects
Columbus Municipal Airport Terminal – Columbus, Indiana (1983)
Columbus City Utilities Building – Columbus, Indiana
DSI Center – Columbus, Indiana (1980)
227 Washington (historic restoration) – Columbus, Indiana
North Salem United Methodist Church – Nashville, Indiana
Fairlawn Presbyterian Church – Columbus, Indiana
Kelley Student Center at Indiana University, Kokomo – Kokomo, Indiana
Library and Gallery at Indiana University, Kokomo – Kokomo, Indiana
Knobview Hall at Indiana University, Southeast – New Albany, Indiana
Paul W. Ogle Cultural & Community Center at Indiana University, Southeast – New Albany, Indiana
Helen G. Simon Hillel Center at Indiana University – Bloomington, Indiana
Crescent Area (restoration/renovation) at Indiana University – Bloomington, Indiana
IUPUC Columbus (renovation of former Air Force Building) – Columbus, Indiana (1985)
National Guard Armory – Columbus, Indiana (1978)
Greenbelt Golf Course Pro Shop – Columbus, Indiana
Tipton Lakes Athletic Club – Columbus, Indiana
AAA building – Columbus, Indiana
Garland Brook Cemetery Office and Mausoleum – Columbus, Indiana
Johnson Oil office – Columbus, Indiana
Tipton Lakes Bridge – Columbus, Indiana
Ramada Inn – Columbus, Indiana
Indiana Professional Golf Association HQ at the Legends of Indiana Golf Course – Franklin, Indiana
Dozens of local homes
City of Columbus: official City of Columbus website
Columbus Indiana Architecture Digital Archives: A small portion of the Columbus Indiana Architectural Archives available online from the IUPUI digital library
The Republic Newspaper – Columbus, Indiana newspaper
Historic Columbus Website – David Sechrest’s tribute to Columbus History
Historic Columbus Message Board – a companion interactive forum to the David Sechrest historical website
Click HERE for a Calendar of Upcoming Events in the Columbus Area.
Click HERE for information about Tours of Columbus Architecture and Design including the Miller House.